Devizes charity cyclists are in need of transport

This Is Wiltshire: Five women are riding 100km from Windsor to London and back for cancer charities. Pictured are Geraldine Marsh, Tracey Kamei, Claire Francis, Louise Hale and Julie Pennell                   (VS355) By Vicky Scipio Five women are riding 100km from Windsor to London and back for cancer charities. Pictured are Geraldine Marsh, Tracey Kamei, Claire Francis, Louise Hale and Julie Pennell (VS355) By Vicky Scipio

Five women from the Devizes area hope to raise thousands of pounds for women’s cancer charities by riding 100 kilometres in the dark at the end of the month.

But their training may be in vain if they cannot find a minivan to take them to the event.

Louise Hale from Worton, Claire Francis from Kingsley Gardens, Geraldine Marsh from Woodland Way, Julie Pennell from Worton and Tracey Kamei from Bowood will set out from Windsor racecourse at 10pm on Saturday, May 31, along the Thames footpath into London and then returning to Windsor.

They have 12 hours to complete the course. The women are raising money for Women v Cancer, a charity that raises funds for research into breast, cervical and ovarian cancers.

The idea was that of Ms Francis, who is in remission from cervical cancer. The 32-year-old pre-school teacher said: “Other than the occasional leisurely ride around the area, none of us have done any serious bike riding, so we are training pretty hard at the moment.

“I just felt that cancer is becoming so prevalent these days. Practically everyone you speak to either has it themselves or someone close to them has it.”

Ms Hale, 30, who works for Aster Communities, said: “Claire emailed me asking ‘how would Iike to do a bike ride?’ It seemed a good idea at the time.

“We will be riding our own mountain bikes. Tracey is borrowing one from a neighbour.”

The women each had to find a minimum of £199 sponsorship each. Ms Hale said: “We have got about £1,500 so far but we are hoping to get some more before we set off.”

The quintet’s charity efforts may be scuppered, though, if they cannot find some way to transport themselves and their bikes to Windsor next week.

Ms Marsh said: “We desperately need to find someone with a van or a minibus who would be prepared to take us to and from Windsor for the ride. If anyone is able to they can ring me on 07738 837186.”

Anyone who would like to sponsor them can do so at www. justgiving.com/claire-francis32

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